Variety makes the world go round and keeps everything in a continuous whirl of activity and business. And so it is with fitness. With stress and anxiety, the byproducts of our busy lives, exercise and fitness are the need of the hour.
Every year, there are new trends and regimens that enthusiasts swear by. Staying healthy is our stab at immortality: the more fit we are, the better the quality of life we can aim for and the longer we can hope to live. So, here’s a bucket load of options you can pick from; and yes, they work.
Bodyjam You absolutely love to tap your feet when listening to music, even at your work station. Aren’t you always the first to spring up the moment the beat gets turned up at a party? Why not utilise your love for music and dance to keep fit and to shed those stubborn pounds? Bodyjam uses the best of both worlds – the infectious energy of dance forms like hip-hop, trap, drum and bass, combined with exercise. This helps transform the gym into a pulsating dance club, one which is open to all age groups where the levels and intensity can vary according to need and ability. With warm-ups, choreography and cooling down, the range is pretty wide. You can get a killer workout and burn up to as much as 500 to 700 calories per session as you dance your butt off to catchy tunes. Other benefits include: an improved metabolism, co-ordination and agility, better mood and energy, healthy weight loss and toned body.
So, what’s stopping you? Get on your dance pants and make every workout feel like it’s a Saturday night.
UGI or ‘You’ve Got it’ is the new functional thirty-minute fitness regimen for strength, cardio and core. Lending a modern twist to the medicine ball, it challenges a person to use the entire muscle group at one time, and includes short and detailed movements with the ball. UGI is fun, and helps you overlook the intensity, and uneasiness if any, while working out. Since the medicine ball is the only piece of equipment, this workout can even be done at home.There are nine exercises for the entire range of warm-up, strength, cardio, steadiness and cooling down: UGI swing, 3 point plank jumps with UGI raise, UGI caterpillar, side lunge jumps with UGI, toss and catch UGI. UGI V ups, alternating reverse lunges with UGI shoulder lift and UGI push-ups to jump squats, are all done by using the UGI ball. Together, they improve balance, condense fats at a very fast pace and boost the heart rate.
Cuban press Strong shoulders have the most mobility, but they’re also the most unstable as evidenced by frequent wounds and twinges. But the good news is that many of these can be prevented and fixed with smart shoulder warm-ups. It definitely takes more than a few rotator cuff workouts to toughen the shoulders. The Cuban press or muscle snatch workouts do the job.
Taking a dumbbell in each hand with a pronated grasp in an upright position. Raise your upper arms to be parallel to the floor, letting your lower arms to hang like a scarecrow. This is the starting position. Externally rotate your shoulders so that you are able to move the upper arms at about 180 degrees. Keep in place your upper arms, spinning them till the wrists are directly above the elbows and the forearms perpendicular to the floor. Press the dumbbells by extending the elbows and straightening your arms overhead. Return to the starting position by reversing the steps as you inhale. Replicate the moves for the suggested number of repetitions.
Hot yoga On a cold winter afternoon rather than staying in your warm bed go for hot / sauna yoga. Within seconds of entering the heated rooms, your body temperature will increase and you will feel good. This hot steam environment helps hydrate skin, stimulates circulation, and increases perspiration thereby releasing toxins.
Warrior sculpt A soulful yet aggressive mixture of yoga and weights, this sweaty uninterrupted flow is a challenging, yet amazingly zen-filled fitness experience. Fitness enthusiasts personify the essence of a warrior in three variations. Warrior I, II, and III are an arrangement of standing positions that need the right mix of stability, physical strength, and spiritual control. Warrior I is a heart-opening beginner’s pose that lets you expand the muscles in your upper arms, chest, shoulders and torso, and strengthens the lower back. Warrior II is a deep hip-opening stance which delivers a powerful stretch as it works simultaneously to tighten and tone the glutes and thighs. The warrior III is an intermediate-level balancing posture and is the most complex of them all. It helps build both physical and mental robustness, improves awareness, willpower and body coordination.
Spartan strong You could be an obstacle-race expert or a newbie with no intention of ever toeing a mud-stained starting line. This workout aims at pushing your physical and emotional limits. It offers stamina to overcome your first race, recover your time intervals, and to move your fitness to the next level. The Spartan Strong workout pushes you to perform your best on the race course and in day-to-day activities. It comprises of medium to high intensity moves.
The Routine Perform each move for about 60 seconds, trying for as many good-form reps as you can within that particular time interval. Try to keep moving; change the moves, and pace the reps as required.
Rest and Retrieval As you move towards the end of each block you need to take roughly 60 seconds to relax before you move on to the next block.
Weights For workouts that call for a weight, make use of a ten- or fifteen-pound sandbag, dumbbell or kettlebell.
The Finish Do the complete circuit twice, for a twenty-four minute workout, resting between blocks.
Farmer’s walk This is the most functional form of exercise that efficiently works the major muscle groups. Hold some heavy weights and walk for a particular length of time and distance. Carrying hefty objects builds strength making everyday tasks like carrying groceries effortless. Moving the body with supplementary weight necessitates the use of muscles of the arms, abs, lats, quads, glutes, hamstrings and calves while you are upright. This helps build muscle incredibly fast, reduces body fat, improves strength and helps prevent injury. Holding a pair of heavyweight dumbbells, kettlebells or other weights in each hand improves the grip. Additionally, the farmer’s walk has a positive effect on the posture.
P90X This is a high-intensity interval training workout that challenges your muscles and heart to make them robust and strong. As your body muscles become sturdier, they boost cardio health, making you shed those extra kilos. The chief idea here is to bring about muscle confusion. By doing a diverse type of workout on a daily basis you keep your muscles guessing, which indicates that you will be working them hard. This workout lessens chances of injury since it allows you to alternate your routine so frequently that it lowers the risk of repetitive wounds. There is an upsurge in elasticity and flexibility when you exercise muscles in a variety of ways.
Healthy weight is never going to go out of style, and the best way to achieve your weight goals include a balanced diet with a regular workout.
Plyometric exercises A plyometric exercise is a speedy and powerful movement that begins with an eccentric muscle-lengthening action and is instantly monitored by an action of concentric muscle-shortening. Plyometric movements improve muscular strength which translates to advanced jumps and faster sprint intervals. Merging plyometric moves with conflict training aids power and performance.
The writer is fitness director of Reset – Holistic Living Concepts, Mumbai
As long as you listen to your body, these exercises will help you get strong and fit, and safeguard you from injuries.
While running barefoot, you must pay attention to the feedback given by your feet and legs to prevent injury. Let your feet get used to the terrain before you become adventurous about where you want to run.
The carry needs a good grip, stability in the shoulder joints and synchronisation in both sides of the gut muscles to stay composed. If any part fails to be in sync, the kettlebell falls and the exercise is done. This is a full-body workout that won’t work if you have any weakness from your hands down to your feet.
This one is the best for stability. If you don’t focus on balance, you will fall. Even when you are concentrating, your core should be steady. Because you only work one side at a time, you can fix any disparities in your left and right legs.
The pull-up is limited due to the poor strength of your grip and back muscles. If after a couple of repetitions you fail to hold the bar, let go. Set over. You cannot stay off the ground once your grip loosens. Work to recover this limitation—grip strength—and your pull-ups will increase.
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